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Pakistan Aeronautical Complex arming Super Mushshak trainer
September 20, 2019
Photo credit: Pakistan Air Force

Pakistan Aeronautical Complex arming Super Mushshak trainer

Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC) is tailoring its Super Mushshak trainer for counterinsurgency (COIN) operations.

As per IHS Jane’s, PAC configured the Super Mushshak to carry an L3 Wescam MX-10 electro-optical and infrared (EO/IR) pod. This was done in response to customers probing if the Super Mushshak can be offered as an intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) platform.

Weighing 16.7 kg, the lightweight MX-10 EO/IR pod with optional laser rangefinder and illuminator.

PAC is also working to integrate the Chinese FT-10, a 25-kg precision-guided bomb (PGB), to the Super Mushshak. If successful, the Super Mushshak would carry one FT-10 on each wing.

The FT-10 – like its FT-siblings – is a free-fall satellite-aided inertial navigation system (GPS/INS) PGB; its range varies at its launch altitude.

These subsystems will also accompany a new digital cockpit, one enabling the aircrew to view the MX-10 EO/IR pod’s feed as well as to manage the increased workload from deploying guided weapons.

It is not known when the attack and ISR-enabled Super Mushshak will be ready for use, IHS Jane’s was told by PAC that “it would take some time to verify and physically validate the findings of the aerodynamic analysis” done to the platform.

Notes & Comments:

As a GPS/INS-guided PGB, the FT-10 is intended for lightly protected fixed installations. A lightweight laser-guided munition, such as the 22.5 kg Roketsan MAM-L, would enable the Super Mushshak to engage both moving and fixed targets (provided the MX-10 EO/IR pod is equipped with a laser-illuminator).

While this will add to the Super Mushshak’s portfolio of roles, the armed Super Mushshak would not be in the same category as larger COIN platforms. It has a substantially lighter payload, less defensibility against anti-air warfare threats, and is not as agile (especially when armed). However, current and potential Super Mushshak users could view the Super Mushshak as a versatile basic trainer, one capable of undertaking special mission roles when required.